From Moorish-Indios to Park 51: A Brief History of Islamophobia in the United States

By: Sophia Rose Arjana

“I begin my reflections on the rise of Islamophobia in America over the past decade by pointing out an often-neglected fact: the fear and hatred directed against Muslims we have seen since 9/11 is nothing new. Anxiety surrounding Islam in the New World dates to the conquest of the Americas by European explorers. The specter of Islam was so powerful in the minds of the conquistadors that they identified much of what they witnessed in the Western Hemisphere with their continued obsession with the Moors.”

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